China, the world's largest food consumer, continued to lead global consumption of Bordeaux wines in 2012, according to the latest industry data.
During the year, it imported 64 million liters of Bordeaux, twice of the volume of Germany, its closest follower, according to data from the Bordeaux Wine Council, a French group that represents more than 10,000 Bordeaux wine producers and vine growers.
Imports jumped by 23 percent from a year earlier to 53 million liters, accounting for 23 percent of the total export amount of Bordeaux wine, the council said.
"China is the first export destination for Bordeaux wine and China's consumption is growing every year," Allen Sichel, a board member of the council, said during a promotional campaign in Beijing on Friday.
As the country's wine imports continued to increase in recent years, domestic wine makers said their market shares have been squeezed by foreign suppliers.
Yantai Changyu Pioneer Wine Co Ltd saw a dramatic decline in its sales of premium wines and reported an 11.1 percent fall in net profit to 1.7 billion yuan ($273 million) for 2012.
But Thomas Jullien, the council's Asia manager, said the Chinese wine market is still growing, and the most important thing is to expand market scale.
"China is a market big enough for everyone. We need to let customers get used to wines first,"